Defenseman Michal Kempny, who has not played a game since March 20 and underwent hamstring surgery on April 2, went through an intense practice on Monday but head coach Todd Reirden stated that he will not be ready to return to action when the Washington Capitals host the Dallas Stars on Tuesday night (7 PM ET, NBC Sports Washington). With the Capitals up against the NHL salary cap since center Evgeny Kuznetsov will return from a three-game suspension against the Stars, defenseman Tyler Lewington skated alongside Radko Gudas on the third-pair in Monday’s practice.
Kuznetsov will start his season on the third-line with forwards Richard Panik and Carl Hagelin after the second-line of forwards Lars Eller, T.J. Oshie, and Jakub Vrana combined for four goals in the first three games. Though, Kuznetsov did replace Panik on the first power-play unit in practice. With Kuznetsov returning, forward Chandler Stephenson is now the odd-man-out.
Defenseman Jonas Seigenthaler, who was sent to the AHL’s Hershey Bears as a paper move on Sunday, did not participate in Monday’s practice. He skated afterward and will play against the Stars on Tuesday.
Gudas will shift to the left side against the Stars.
Reirden was not definitive but the Capitals could only have six healthy defensemen available when they hit the road for two games later this week.
— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) October 7, 2019
After practice, the Capitals did their annual puppy calendar photoshoot.
NHL News Bites
- The Pittsburgh Penguins announced that centers Evgeni Malkin and Nick Bjugstad will both be out long-term with lower-body injuries
Capitals lines and D pairs today:
— Tom Gulitti (@TomGulittiNHL) October 7, 2019
— CapitalsPR (@CapitalsPR) October 7, 2019
By Harrison Brown